Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Please to enjoy!

My favorite holiday is Halloween! I love playing dress-up and pretending to be someone else. Perhaps that is the repressed actor in me.
In honor of the upcoming fun of Halloween I've commissioned a new design from my personal blog design team (actually my super talented sister, Sara). I hope you enjoy it and the new playlist I've composed just for the occasion!
We all could use a distraction from troubles these days. Grab your favorite Halloween treat, your favorite people and have a great time together!
Much love to ya'll!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Watermelon, watermelon, watermelon vine



That's right, folks! My inadvertent watermelon vine has not one, not two, but three little watermelons growing on it. How amazing is that? Seeds thrown out in the yard have actually grown into a vine that is producing fruit. Just another one of Heavenly Father's miracles evidenced in everyday life. Cool, huh?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Save me, I'm drowning!

Sorry about the lack of postage going on here at Vaughn Farms. Trust me, nothing's wrong and the craziness hasn't subsided! I'm just drowning in other stuff my schoolwork, the kids' schoolwork, chores, church callings, etc.
I am reading everyone else's stuff and LOVING it!
In this time of my absence please feel free to visit my list of favorite blogs found in the lower, right-hand portion of your screen. Enjoy, I'll be back soon.
Um, could someone through me that life preserver over there, yes that one. Quickly, please!!!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

My 2 New Fave Shows

There are two new shows this fall that have quickly become "I must Tivo and watch!"

First is "90210". Now, I'm sure this is just because when I was growing up and the original Beverly Hills 90210 was on i was forbidden to watch it. But, I do like the new one. Right now, it is mainly about these two kids that move from Kansas to BH because their dad is the new principal of West Beverly High. The kids, Anna and Dixon, have to adjust to a school where kids drive $100,000 cars and have jets to cart them around whenever they want. But so far the two are sticking to their "Mid-Western sensibilities" which is Hollywood talk for they've actually got morals. Hum, teenagers with morals, that's a new TV concept.

The second show is a little less sweet. Actually, it can be down-right nasty, but it is totally HILARIOUS. It's "Whatever, Martha," a new show in the Fine Living Network. This show takes clips of old Martha Stewart shows and the hosts, Alexis Stewart (Martha's daughter) and her friend Jennifer Hutt totally rip on them. As a recovering Martha-holic I find it humorus and theraputic to hear the things I think about the show said outloud. Of course, the show is produced by the big M herself but her daughter is either truly damaged or a great actress. Last night, I cackled when they showed a clip of Martha proclaiming how vital it was that we all know how to GROOM A HORSE and the two show hosts pipe up with, "Oh yes, because everyone in America has a horse in need of proper grooming!"
(sidenote: this show can get mean and Alexis obviously has a potty mouth, she gets bleeped quite often)
It truly lives up to the ad, "You've thought it. Now they say it!"
Gotta go, Tivo's calling!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

On Making Fur Coats

No one in our family wears fur coats. First of all, we live in Alabama. We barely need to wear any coats ever. Second, we don't have that kind of cash laying around to spend on something we'd never use. Third, I do think it is kind of cruel to kill an animal for fur when we have other coat options. If we were living elsewhere (Siberia) or in another time(pre-industrialization) I can see the need but today fur coats are an unnecessary excessive luxury (just one girl's opinion, here). I'm no vegan but, come on.

Anyhow, I have never expressed this opinion to my children. As a matter of fact, they have never even seen modern fur coats until this week. So, they're watching one of our most favorite shows, "How Its Made," the other day. On the episode they start showing how fur coats are made. They begin with beaver fur pelts, blah, blah, blah. Well, our kids do know what beavers are. A family of them lives at my parents' lake and wreaks all sorts of havoc there. Nevertheless, the kids love the beavers.

As the announcer is talking about the fur coat making process Evie (age 5) screams, "What!? They kill animals just so people can wear the fur?! Who would do that?! That is awful?!" (She is also covering her face with her hands and on the verge of tears)

Ever the loving brother Holdyn (age 7) replys, "Oh, come on, Evie! Give the guy a break! He's just doing his job and trying to make a living!"

What? Where did either of these children get these ideas? I was sitting there looking at them and trying not to bust a gut laughing at both of them. But, also I was proud. They have different opinions and feel they can express them freely in our home. Kinda cool, I thought.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Scrub a Dub Dog

As you'll remember, after the Great July 4th Massacre of '08 Marshall became a full-fledged outdoor dog. I think he's adjusted just fine. He has several "spots" around the property that he's claimed for his own. One spot on each the front and back porch, under the front porch, etc.

Anyway, all this outdoor time has made him one stinky pooch so on Saturday K decided he needed a bath. Holdyn, Evie, and Kallie were all invited to join the bathing festivities. I was invited to photograph.

Times like this, when we're together, laughing, no schedule or events - these are the times I love. In our world today many families don't have times like this. I think its sad. I want our children to remember the fun we had at home instead of endless car rides from practice to lessons to events. Those things are good but not a substitute for time together as a family.

These simple things are important. Especially in a world that seems to be getting scarier and more unsure everyday. Home should be a haven, a safe place filled with laughter, learning, and love.
So on Saturday Marshall's bath made him shiny and clean. It made the rest of us warm and fuzzy. Now, that's my kind of Saturday fun!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

A Grocery Experiment

Alright, I HATE grocery shopping. It's true. Mostly because I hate spending money on ANYTHING. Yesterday, I told K it almost physically hurts me to spend money. (I've surely got psychological issues with money) I don't know why. I love my kids, I want to feed them. I love my husband, I want to feed him. Heck, I love to eat and want to feed myself. I just don't want to buy the groceries.

I'm constantly on a guilt-ridden search to buy more food for less money. I already shop only every two weeks and limit my budget to strictly no more than $175. And I do mean strictly. As in, if the total on my calculator that I carry through the store gets close I'll just stop shopping and we'll just go without whatever I haven't gotten yet. Crazy, I know. I don't understand it myself.
Anyway, until recently this plan was working pretty well. However, the kids are getting bigger and eating us out of freakin house and home. Groceries that are supposed to last for two weeks are now lasting maybe one week.

So, ever in search of more food for less money, I read that a local grocery store that I NEVER shop in just completed a $3.5 million renovation. Wow, I thought, I've really got to check this out. Expanded produce section, more choices, more organics!

Sidenote: Another issue I have is that I HATE WAL-MART. And I mean hate like a crackhead hates crack. You know its evil and destructive but yet you cannot tear yourself away from its tentacled grasp.

On Friday I excitedly (sad, I know) drive to the grocery store and practically run through the parking lot (again-sad) into the store, grab a cart (called a buggy in the South), and plunge into the frigid depths of the store. I can barely look around because all I can think is that this place is @#$%*&^ COLD!

So, immediately I do notice that the store looks nice and there is a great produce selection, as advertised. Bouyed by this I make some produce selections that are less expensive and more yummy looking than at the "Son of Sam's" SuperCenter. Then I head deeper into the store, pass no less that 4 aisles of beer and wine (I kid you not), and puruse the store.

Second Sidenote: In addition to this trek to a new store I also made a goal to cut the amount of HFCS (high fructose corn syrup) that we ingest. Always try to be a better Mommy, right?

Aaanywho, as I cruise the aisles of the newly remodeled, super freezing store I start trying to check items off my list. Capri-Suns, uh, where are the Capri-Suns, oh, no Capri-Suns, uh, ok. Moving on, Del-Monte Ketchup (no HFCS), uh, no Del-Monte brand anything, weird. I pick up a few items, notice they are 50 cents to $1 more expensive than the "Son of Sam's" SuperCenter and I crack. I can't do it. I make it through the rest of the store and go to checkout. I've got a few BOGO items and the produce.

At the check-out I am told proudly by the cashier (who just heaved all of my produce down the ramp to the bagger-girl who mashed them all together into the bag) that I just saved $15.51! To which I want to scream, "Shows what you know, I just spent $20 more here than I would have at the "Son of Sam's" SuperCenter! Thankyouverymuch for mashing up my tomatoes!"

Dejectedly, I drive to the SuperCenter. I troll through the gigantor parking lot and slog into the store with my head hung low. I finish out my list and drive home.

I unload enough groceries to feed a Roman legion, sweating in the 90+ degree heat all-the-while.

Oh well, I tried. I tried to overcome my psychological/emotional money issues. I tried to break the hold that the evil Super Retail chain has over me and my family. I tried, I really did.

On the bright side, we are making an effort to cut the HFCS. I've found that although the nasty stuff is in many things we eat it is also NOT in many of my family's staples. Yay! Now time to start cutting out the bad and making some better choices. Can we do it? We'll see...

Monday, September 8, 2008

An Older Woman

So yet again I am married to an older woman.

Hey don't cry! I love older women.

I mean -- Uh --- Don't look at me like that!
Smile it is you birthday!

Happy Birthday Jennie! We love you!!

Friday, September 5, 2008

The Inadvertent Gardner

We didn't plant a garden this year. I really wanted to and had great plans for all of the fruits and veggies we'd plant. But things happened, or should I say, didn't happen--like me getting my butt outside and planting--so now we don't have a garden. But hark, there is hope!
Behold, my watermelon vine!!!!

This watermelon vine is growing in the middle of our backyard. Earlier in the summer I bought a watermelon and we ate most of it. The last bit spoiled so I tried to feed it to Marshall, the four-legged garbage disposal. He wouldn't eat it so I dumped it out of his bowl onto the grass and left it. A few months later, VIOLA! A lone vine. I'm not sure if it will yield any fruit but it does have blooms, see...Maybe my inadvertent gardening will be fruitful, literally!

Thursday, September 4, 2008


That's how I'm feeling today. I had a stomachache last night which kept me from sleeping well so I was trying to rest today because I have class tonight. But today (probably because I feel yucky) I am terribly lonely. This is the first time since school started for the kids that I've felt weepy and sad. See, they start Art lessons after school today so they will stay at school instead of me picking them up. Then, when they are finished at 4pm K will pick them up. I know they will have a great time and they won't need me to get them there or back. I trust everyone at their school and of course their Daddy,too. But still, I'm feeling sad that I won't see them before they go to bed tonight. I won't be there to pick them up and listen to all three of them talk (at once) about how their days were, etc. I'm getting teary just thinking about it! Pathetic, I know, but I'm not so good at independence. I've prayed for it, wished for it, and begged for it and now they are ready to exercise some of it and I'm terrified and sad and lonely.... Gotta go, my eyes are too wet to see the screen... I'll be fine tomorrow, its just one of those days.

Monday, September 1, 2008

A Bunch of Sickos

Sorry, there hasn't been much going on here. Kallie has strep throat. She had complained for about three days of a sore throat and when I finally looked in her mouth it was obvious what she had. This was Wednesday, which led to a Dr's appointment on Thursday. This is only like the 3rd time in her life she's been to the Dr for being sick and we've never had a child with strep. (weird I know!) So, I forgot that she is allergic to penicillin and arithromycin (sp?) because the last time she had an antibiotic was when she was less than 1 year old. I remembered that she was allergic AFTER she broke out in an all-body rash after taking her first dose of antibiotic on Thursday afternoon. This led to more phone calls and waiting for a new prescription most of the day on Friday. But, we got it and she is totally fine now and back to normal.

Now, Evie has strep. I knew she would get it. When one of them is sick it is only a matter of time before the other gets it. It doesn't matter what you do, the other WILL get sick. Thankfully, we've got a new, barely used prescription of penicillin laying around and she got a dose of that today (so far no allergic reaction).

The most pathetic part of this entire experience was that Kallie had to miss two days of school while Evie had to go to school for two days without her. On Thursday Evie was so sad to go to school alone. I walked her in and told her teacher about Kallie and she understood the situation. I expected Evie to call half way through the day with some reason she needed to come home but no, she made it. Then again on Friday she was sad to go without Kallie. When I picked her and Holdyn up on Friday afternoon I left Kallie sleeping at home b/c K came home from work early. Immediately upon entering the van she looked around and said in a panic, "Where's Kallie, what happened to her?!"

Kallie, all the while was desperately missing her sister, too. Several times on Thursday and Friday she said things like, "I wish Evie was here," or "I miss my sister." This was the first time they went an entire day separated. It was very traumatic for them and me. Thankfully there is no school tomorrow/today and Evie will have had 24hours of antibiotic in her system and will be able to go to school on Tuesday. Only, now I've got a sore throat! I cannot get strep. I just started my semester of school on Thursday and have classes 3 nights a week! (BTW, I'm getting my Master's in Secondary Education and my teaching certificate) Pray for an end to this plague upon my household.